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Not understanding how the G3-mp3 scheduler works.


EDc
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Hey guys,

 

I'm using the g3-mp3 to schedule a show for an event and I ran into a few problems. My client wants the shows the shows to start on the dot every hour (6pm, 7pm, 8pm, 9pm, 10pm) with lights on in between the shows. They also want the lights to turn off 3 minute prior to the show (5:57pm, 6:57pm, 7:57pm, etc) so the crowd can gather and then have the show play on the dot. 

 

My main sequence is 3 minutes long, so using hardware utility what I did was choose the options 'plays during scheduled time' (everyday 5:57pm - 10:20pm), 'repeat the show every hour', 'lights on' between shows', put my 3 minute sequence into the 'mp3 player showlist' and I set 'optional start sequence' to a blank 3 minute sequence that I wrote (this file is a LAS file that is 3 minutes long, all lights off, this way I can achieve the 3 minutes 'lights off' prior to the sequence lighting up on the hour). I created my show using ' SD card is for NEW g3 Dual network Director' set on the recommended 57.6k speed.

 

So this is what happened both days when I tested the unit:

 

5:57 pm - I see that the director is playing the show 01, no lights (as expected, thinking is playing the LAS file)
6:00 pm - I see that the director is playing the show 01, no lights (this is wrong, as it should be playing the main sequence, possibly playing the LAS file again?)
6:03 pm - I see that the director is playing the show 01, lights ON (the main sequence is playing however, it is 3 minutes late)
6:06 pm - Lights on, director now has 'wait' showing waiting for the next show (again, 3 minutes late due to the above sequence)

6:57 pm - lights ON (not working properly again, as the show should be running the LAS file)
7:00 pm - I see that the director is playing the show 01, no lights (this is wrong, as it should be playing the main sequence, meaning is playing the LAS file)
7:03 pm - I see that the director is playing the show 01, lights ON (the main sequence is playing however, it is 3 minutes late)
7:06 pm - Lights on, director now has 'wait' showing waiting for the next show (again, 3 minutes late due to the above sequence)

8pm - 10pm, the director/lights is working the same way as 6:57 pm - 7:06 pm.

 

What I need it to do is this:

5:57 pm - show plays the 3 minute LAS optional start sequence, lights off during this time
6:00 pm - show plays the main sequence
6:03 pm - show ends, but lights all on until next show

6:57 pm - show plays the 3 minute LAS optional start sequence, lights off during this time
7:00 pm - show plays the main sequence
7:03 pm - show ends, but lights all on until next show again

repeats until the 10 pm show finishes. 

 

 

I did post a ticket to the help desk, but since I'm on the other side of the globe and have to deal with the time difference, I figure I post it on the forums also to see if people have experience this problem too. 

 

Either this is just the default way the director runs the shows based on a hourly time, or I must be scheduling something wrong with hardware utility. Any help/input would be much appreciated.

 

Thanks,

 

Ed

 

Also - does the director run the sequence regardless of time when you first plug in the SD card?

 

For example:

 

I wrote my schedule to be 10:57 am - 10:00pm

I write my show onto a SD card at 11:20 am. I plug the SD card into the director and it will immediately start running my show (optional LAS file first, followed by 3 minute main sequence)

11:26 am - all lights on waiting for 11:57 am.

Edited by EDc
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I suspect it has something to do with limitations in the hardware design of the director, not so much the software. I know I've had to do some fairly tricky programming over the years to get the effect needed using an MP3 director.

 

Two ideas -

 

1) Set the clock ahead 3 minutes.

 

2) You have 9 show spaces on the SD card that you can use. If you wanted, you could schedule 6:00-6:57, 7:00-7:57, etc., to get the effect you needed. Plus, you wouldn't have to worry about someone changing the time on the director and throwing things out of whack.

 

The downside to this, of course, is that you are going to use multiple show slots to achieve this effect.

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I don't believe you can set your schedule as you describe in the original post, there are potential conflicts and thus the issues you are having.  When scheduling your show to play on the hour, you have to select an option for what happens between shows, either lights on, lights off or a filler sequence, so I think your lights off animation sequence is really being ignored by the director since you indicate that you selected "lights on between shows".  I believe Don's suggestion is one option, he has helped me successfully with director scheduling answers in the past .  I think another option you could try, with Audacity, you could create a 54 minute silent mp3 file, then use that to create a 54 minute musical sequence (.lms file) with all lights on.  Create your show with your 3 minute file and the 54 minute all lights on file, scheduled to play every hour with "lights off" in between shows.   

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No one has caught one of the main issues, he us using the "START UP SEQUENCE" option, that option ONLY PLAYS ONE TIME, at start up, then it is ignored for the rest of the show.

 

What he is trying to do, yes, it can be done.   I didn't have an G3-MP3, but I'm sure it's not that much different from my G2 director.  You must use the Hardware Utility to accomplish this.

 

If he wants the lights to be off for 3 minutes between shows, he will have to add a 3 minute ANIMATION sequence as the first or last sequence in the show list, but if he also wants lights on for say 54 minutes or whatever he needs it for, another animation sequence with all cells turned on would be the next to last sequence or second sequence in the show list.  But there is an EASIER way....see I.E. below.  

 

I.E.  Show01 3 minutes NO LIGHTS, 3 minute Musical Light Sequences, 54 minutes of ALL LIGHTS ON.   And to start the musical show on the hour every hour would require several shows, which you can only have up to 9 in a Director, However, Show01, Show02, Show03, Show04, etc. etc. would all have to start 3 minutes EARLIER than the top of the hour.  

 

That is say he wants the main show to start at 6:00pm, Show01 would have to start at 5:57pm and end at 6:57pm, Show02 would start at 6:57pm and end at 7:57pm, and each show would go this route in succession up to the maximum number of shows you can have, again, which is limited to 9 on the Director.

 

It's actually quite easy to accomplish this with a Director unit, but you have to use the Hardware Utility to do it.   The Simple Show Builder can not do this.

Edited by Orville
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Don - Thank you, that worked, setting the director 3 minute ahead.

 

Lightson - yup, that was one of the options I thought of doing too, but just felt the director with hardware utility would have been able to set the schedule that I originally wanted.

 

Orville - I was using the Hardware utility to set my show. The 'optional start sequence', starts at the beginning of every show (at least thats what it does in the G3, not sure about G2). I get what you and Don are saying with setting multiple different shows on different times now, thanks for your input.

 

I just thought the director would have been able to program the schedule like how I first intended, but as Don said I guess the hardware has limitations. I will be sure to keep these points in mind the next time I program another show with the Director, thanks for everyone's help.

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Don - Thank you, that worked, setting the director 3 minute ahead.

 

Lightson - yup, that was one of the options I thought of doing too, but just felt the director with hardware utility would have been able to set the schedule that I originally wanted.

 

Orville - I was using the Hardware utility to set my show. The 'optional start sequence', starts at the beginning of every show (at least thats what it does in the G3, not sure about G2). I get what you and Don are saying with setting multiple different shows on different times now, thanks for your input.

 

I just thought the director would have been able to program the schedule like how I first intended, but as Don said I guess the hardware has limitations. I will be sure to keep these points in mind the next time I program another show with the Director, thanks for everyone's help.

Went back and reread the G3 manual, and this is what I found in it: {copied and pasted}:

 

When the Showlist has been constructed, you may 
use the Optional Start Sequence section to select a 
sequence that will start this show. This can be an 
animation only or musical sequence. This sequence 
runs at the start of the show. For Loop Continuously
and Play Showlist Once, this start sequence plays 
once.
 
For scheduled shows, Play show once per… 
this start sequence plays at the start of each 
hourly/half-hourly/quarter-hourly/10 minute show.
 
----------------- End Copy/Paste --------------------------------
 
So the way I understand the G3, is if you use a scheduled show, then the start sequence WILL play before each show starts.  
 
Since I'm using 3.8.2 and a was using a G2 Director{it died last year}, this is limited to a one time run only in my Director, as I've never had a start up sequence run before each show starts and I tried it.   Seems the newer features like this are from 3.9.x forward.
 
I had read the G3 manual some time back and somehow misread this aspect of the G3 Director.
 
Hopefully I'll be able to get a G3 Director in the near future to replace the old dead G2 unit.   Well, it's not completely dead, it just won't read the SD Cards inserted in it!   HU recognizes it, can set time, just can't get it to read the show on any SD cards I've tried using in it.  Quit reading them just before my Halloween Show started last year in 2013.    Now I've got to figure out where I put the old G2 unit, seems I've misplaced it somewhere in all the assorted decorations when I took everything down last year to move everything to new locations this year. DOH!
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I guess I take the easy way out. lol  I set the timer from 6:00pm to 9:00pm insert the SD card & let it pay. After every 4 songs I have an "all on" las file where the display is all blue then after another 4 songs the display is all green. This year it will be four colours. After every 4 songs there will be an "all on" las in Red, then Green, then Blue & then White).

 

I should try setting a show like show 1, then show 2 then show 3 so I can learn.

Edited by lightzilla
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